Published online by Cambridge University Press: 21 October 2015
I am pleased to present the thirty-ninth edition of Southeast Asian Affairs. Like past issues in the series, this review of political, economic, and security developments in Southeast Asia in 2011 contains both Southeast Asian and outside perspectives of Southeast Asia. It is designed to be easily readable yet in-depth, informative and analytical. Southeast Asian Affairs has become a useful guide to all those, both specialists and non-specialists, who seek to understand Southeast Asian dynamics.
The year 2011 saw some slowdown from the strong economic growth in the previous year, but generally Southeast Asia as a region still did well. Perhaps the major political surprise was the rapid pace of change in Myanmar which saw ministers, officials, and businessmen from many countries scrambling to the country to assess the prospects and opportunities. Tensions in the South China Sea subsided somewhat in the second half of the year, though it was not clear if this relative calm would continue in 2012. ASEAN had an active year under Indonesia's Chair: among other things, it mediated in the Thai-Cambodia border conflict; held the expanded East Asian Summit with U.S. and Russian participation for the first time; and, in a vote of confidence in the reforms under way in Myanmar, agreed that Myanmar should chair ASEAN in 2014.
I would like to thank the authors and the editors, as well as others who have, in one way or another, helped to make this publication possible. The contents of this volume represent a wide variety of views and perspectives. Needless to say, the authors alone are responsible for the facts and opinions expressed in their respective contributions, and their interpretations do not necessarily reflect the views of the Institute.
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